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Kings One Game Away From Second Stanley Cup

Stanley Cup Finals Game Three: Kings 3 – Rangers 0
After two overtime losses in a row, the New York Rangers didn’t seem to have the same passion that they did in Game One or Two. The end result was a 3-0 win for the Los Angeles Kings, moving them just one game away from capturing the 2014 Stanley Cup.

The first period was hard hitting and back and forth. However, Jeff Carter would quiet the crowd and stun the Rangers after he scored a goal with less than a second left on the clock. The 1-0 lead for the Kings was their first lead in the last four games that they’ve played, even though they won the previous three as well.

Assisting on Carters goal was Justin Williams. Williams has now scored at least one point in five straight games, as well as eight of the last ten spreading over the Western Conference and Stanley Cup Finals. There is no denying the importance that Williams has had for the Kings in his 12th season in the league.

The Kings then came out and score two more goals in the second, though it wouldn’t matter because Carter’s goal in the first was all Jonathon Quick needed to get the win for LA. The Rangers had 32 shots on goal on Monday night and Quick stopped each and every one of them. The Kings averaged a league best two goals against during the regular season, and Quick has kept up the production as the rock between the pipes during this Stanley Cup run.

As for the Rangers goalie, Henrik Lundqvist has typically been solid for New York during this playoff run. However, he had just 12 saves on 15 shots on Monday for a .800 save percentage.

The last time that the Kings were in the Stanley Cup Finals, which was just two years ago against the New Jersey Devils, they also went up 3-0 in the series. The Devils would then come back and win two games in a row, before the Kings closed it out in Game Six. The win was the first time the Stanley Cup had been brought to LA and now they are hoping to make it twice in the last three seasons.

Only one time in history has a team come back from being down 0-3 in a series, something the Rangers will hope to accomplish when the puck drops for Game Four on Wednesday. The one piece of good news might be that a team has come back from an 0-3 hole during the 2014 postseason, but the bad news is that it was the Kings who did so against the San Jose Sharks in the first round. Whether it’s the last game of the NHL season or not, you can check with sportspicks.com handicappers for insight into Game Four. In the event that the Rangers hold out and extend things, we’ll also be with you for the remainder of the series.

It’s not over yet, but the Kings are certainly tightening their grip. They sit at 2/13 odds to win the Stanley Cup, while the Rangers have dropped to 24/5.